Inspiration is Blooming Everywhere!


One last Rudbeckia blossom shines with Chrysanthemum blooms in our Autumn garden.


Hi Friends!

Summer’s last hurrah was a delightful gift for Midwestern gardeners! We had three glorious days of warm sunshine and blue skies to finish putting our gardens to bed earlier this week. Squirrels were scampering around in the yard getting ready for the cold weather, while I scampered about in the garden!  Our trees are almost bare now and the leaves have been raked and mulched. Autumn’s bright colors are fading very quickly now.

                                                                                             {via Pinterest }

Many gardeners enjoy cleaning up their flower beds in Autumn. However, I always leave the stems and seed heads standing through the winter months. The birds can take advantage of the seeds while other food sources are buried under the winter snow. It brings me such pleasure to enjoy my ‘shadow garden’ all winter long, when the tall stems and dried seed heads cast lovely shadows on the snow. As I shovel, I delight in the wonderful garden memories. Although my fingers and toes may be frozen, my heart is always warmed by the sweet shadows reflected on the sparkling snow.

We are expecting a chilling Halloween, in more ways than one!  Brave trick-or-treaters will really have to bundle up this year. Costumes based on the movie ‘Frozen’ will match our Halloween chill. With warnings of a killing frost on Friday evening, it’s time to gather the flowers, filling vases with the last colorful blossoms of the season. I’m looking forward to surprising our neighbors with bright bouquets!


Many years, we still have Chrysanthemums blooming in the garden to create a lovely Thanksgiving centerpiece.


Any time you need a little sunshine, please stop by to visit our garden!

{ via Pinterest }

It’s so easy to  revisit all of this year’s garden memories. It might be lovely to brew a cup of tea. Then just click on the dark stripe on the far left side of the screen. Under ‘Categories,’ click on Petals.  Take a leisurely Springtime walk through the garden. Enjoy the perennials and herbs throughout the summer months, and visit the garden in Autumn. You might enjoy reading the sweet memories of our Friendship Garden and Herb Garden, too.

Inspiration is blooming everywhere!

Over the past few weeks, I have been busily setting up a Studio space for papercrafting. In anticipation of having a special place to be creative (and messy!), I have been finding much inspiration from some of my favorite crafters. I’d love to introduce  you to someone very special ~ Sandy Allnock, founder of Operation Write Home. Sandy’s tireless efforts on behalf of our nation’s heroes really make a difference!   I admire her creativity, talent, hard work, and dedication.

Sandy’s ‘Silverware Theory’ of craft room organization makes so much sense. You might enjoy her video, showing how she organized her new craft room. I found wonderful inspiration at 15:36 in the video. Take a peek!  Sandy keeps an ‘Inspiration Drawer’ near her desk. It is filled with her newest  tools and supplies for cardmaking. What a great idea!

Inspired by Sandy, I started filling an ‘Inspiration Box’ when I began dreaming of a Studio space of my own. The contents of my Inspiration Box are always changing. Whenever I bring home new cardmaking supplies or tools, they go directly into my Inspiration Box. Each time I begin a new project, I take a peek in my Inspiration Box and try to use something new! It’s fun to learn new skills by trying new things!


New cardmaking supplies and tools find a special home in my Inspiration Box until they are used on a project.

After I use the stamps, embellishments, or tools once or twice, then they move to the storage drawers in my Studio. Hopefully, I will remember that I have them because I have already used them! I intentionally chose a small, photo storage box to use as my Inspiration Box. As it fills up, it is a great reminder to use what I already have before buying more supplies.  Inspiration + Motivation = a very happy, contented cardmaker!

If I came home from the craft store and immediately put  the new supplies into the drawers, I would forget that I bought them. Sandy’s idea works like magic! At the moment, my Inspiration Box is filling up. The next time I go downstairs to the Studio to make cards, it will be fun to be creative with the Wplus9 ‘Hand Lettered Hello’ stamps and dies, the lovely sentiments in the Power Poppy ‘Renewal’ stamp set, or the Sizzix ‘Filmstrip’ die.  Oh, the ideas are already flowing!!

I always think of Sandy when I open my Inspiration Box. I’m so grateful for this small idea that makes so much sense!  An Inspiration Box, Drawer, or Basket might help so many different crafters ~ holding fabric and accessories for sewing, beads for jewelry making,…   It’s a lovely reminder to use what you have!

Inspiration is blooming everywhere around us!

Create happiness!

♡ Dawn


P. S.  Can you think of a way to adapt the Inspiration Box idea to help motivate or inspire one of your creative passions?


12 thoughts on “Inspiration is Blooming Everywhere!

  1. Good Morning from Wales where the weather has turned quickly ~ let’s pretend we are now in the Southern Hemisphere where Summer is a comin’ in? I think we can sip a mug of tea with herbs from your Tea Garden to remind us of the warmer days of Summer in our Gardens ~~~

    • Bore da, Deb! We are feeling the chilly weather on both sides of The Pond now! A warm cup of tea from the Herb Garden sounds wonderful. Maybe we can pick the same herbs, make a cup of tea together, and savor our memories of warm days in the garden! Happy Halloween, Deb! ♡

  2. Good morning Dawn! The midwest has been a star and shining example of one of the loveliest autumns you can have! GORGEOUS BLOOMS!!!!!! Anita

    • Bonjour, Anita! I’m so glad that we could share our summer gardens this year. It will be fun to look back at the garden during the cold months ahead. We are expecting snow flurries on Halloween afternoon! The trick-or-treaters will really have to bundle up this year. Warm hugs! ♡

  3. Right now, my inspiration box is this post of yours, Dawn; so fill with creative ideas and all your gardening enthusiasm as well. We are still raking and cleaning here on the Cutoff, with a crew of younger family members coming on Saturday for a huge raking and hauling adventure.

    • Hi Penny! What a sweet thing to say! You must have LOTS of leaves in your wooded yard on the Cutoff. I wonder if the deer will come for another visit? It’s so nice to plan a family leaf raking adventure! Bundle up and make wonderful family memories! ♡

  4. Good morning, Dawn! I poured myself a cup of Tasha Tudor’s Welsh Breakfast tea, turned on the fireplace and made my way to my favorite chair to start my day and I found your lovely email/blog post in my mailbox! Love spending breakfast with you today!

    I do the same thing with the garden….leave the seedheads for the birds. And I love your word picture of it being a shadow! Exactly!

    What a great idea that Sandy has for the Inspiration drawer. I am heading next to watch the video. Have a fun rest of your week. Happy Halloween! ♥

    • Hi, Karen! How lovely to have breakfast together! Brrrr! It must be chilly in Wisconsin this morning, too! I’m sure your yard looks beautiful at this time of year. I thought of your sewing room as I was writing. Maybe an Inspiration Basket could hold some of your favorite fabric for upcoming projects. I love how my Inspiration Box narrows down my choices of supplies and inspires me to create cards with them, instead of having them sit, forgotten, in a drawer. Now the new supplies are ready and waiting for me! Happy Halloween, my friend! ♡

  5. Dawn,
    What a lovely garden and how I wish I lived in the midwest. I long for some chilly weather.
    Your inspiration box is really a great idea. I can’t tell you how many times I put new supplies in my carefully labeled art boxes, only to stumble upon it months later. I have bought a duplicate at least once!
    Enjoy your Halloween.

    • Hi Karen! Our chilly weather has definitely arrived and it’s always a big adjustment! We are expecting snow flurries on Halloween this year. When I heard Sandy describe her idea for her Inspiration Drawer, it made such good sense! I can already tell that the Inspiration Box is motivating and inspiring me to be creative with my new tools and supplies. Such a good thing! Have a spook-tacular Halloween! ♡

    • Hi, Jayne! I’m so happy that you stopped by to visit! I have been watching lots of craft room tour videos in anticipation of setting up my new Studio space. Sandy’s ‘Silverware Theory’ of organization really inspired me. I can already see how nice it is to include an ‘Inspiration Box.’ It’s the perfect starting point for each new project! Wishing you a wonderful start to November! ♡

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